Toledo City Farmers Assisted in Marketing Products

Created on Tuesday, 18 November 2014

The desire to taste the farmers' produce is what drove the Toledo City Agriculture Office (CAO) to help sell farm commodities.

According to Renelio Mabao, City Agriculturist , the program to market farmers' produce started when City Hall employees requested to buy rice for tasting. Since then, Mabao said, they have not stopped ordering from the CAO.

The initiative has been going on since August this year, and has since enticed some 10 farmers to bring their produce to the CAO for marketing. Farmers were elated that CAO is helping them market their products. Mabao added that marketing , is an important activity and a crucial factor in the success of a farmer.

Farm gate price of rice is P2,100 per sack but in the market retail price could reach as high as P2,500 per sack.

According to Mabao, the rice seeds for planting are sourced from the community seedbank . Community seed banking is a program of the Department of Agriculture (DA) which uses farmers to propagate the seeds in the community, thereby providing them free seeds. Based on records a farmer spends around P1,300.00 for a bag of inbred rice seeds alone. Farmers are seed banking the Rc 18,20 and 22 varieties. The said varieties are tested and well adapted to the soil and climate in the area.

Mabao said more farmers are recently encouraged to plant due to the DA fertilizer grant program.

Ester Bactismo, of barangay Canlumampao, who has been farming for 20 years said this is the first time she did not have to worry about marketing her rice. Bactismo said that she gains more than half of the total rice production cost with the community seed banking and fertilizer subsidy program of the government.

Though the number of farmers catered by the marketing program of the city is an iota of the around 1,0000 farmers in the city, but sooner the said program will be expanded and more farmers will be benefited.